Kaipara District Council has slammed the Government's three waters reform.
Mayor Dr Jason Smith said there were too many unanswered questions for the council to have confidence in the reform process.
Councillors at Wednesday's Kaipara District Council (KDC)'s council meeting stopped short of formally opting in or out of the reforms.
But they formally hit out, via a formal meeting motion, at the radical reshape of the way New Zealand's drinking water, wastewater and stormwater is managed, strongly signalling their dissatisfaction with the proposed changes.
Whangārei and Far North District councils have in the past two months formally opted out of the Government's three waters reform modelling for the North.
The Government wants to combine Northland's Kaipara, Far North and Whangārei District councils with Auckland Council in a giant top of New Zealand three waters grouping currently called Entity A.
Smith said a major still-unresolved issue was being unable to get updated information from the Government around the reform's proposed financial costs and benefits, given Whangārei and Far North District councils had opted out.
He had made repeated attempts to get this information but it had not been forthcoming.
The Government had presented potential reform cost savings for each Northland council's ratepayers. But these figures were based on all four councils being part of Entity A.
"We are not Kaikōura District Council or Kāpiti District Council – our nearest neighbours have provisionally [opted] out of this reform," Smith said.
He said Kaipara was in a grave place.
Councillors said they were seriously concerned about local people's rights to locally control their lives.
"What we absolutely see now is that three waters reforms directly impact on local democracy, local democratic decision making by elected, the key word is elected, representatives and on the mana of Kaipara District Council," Smith said.
KDC had a mana-enhancing agreement with local Te Iwi o Te Roroa. The three waters reform did not offer similarly for the people of Kaipara, the council or the district.
Cr Peter Wethey said Government figures for benefits locally forecast economies of scale.
But much of this was based on estimates.
"There are so many assumptions, it's like trying to grab a handful of air," Wethey said.
Councillors' concerns included lack of clarity around how Kaipara's many land drainage and flood protection schemes would fit into the reforms.
How the new model would integrate planning for future growth and three waters servicing was also an issue raised.
Kaipara Deputy Mayor Anna Curnow said there were definitely reform process flaws.
But she was not particularly hung up on who owned Kaipara's three waters assets.
She said the community would still have access to those assets under new proposals.
"It's not about stealing assets, it's really about changing who owns them," she said.
Cr Victoria del la Varis-Woodcock said the Government had the right intention, as all New Zealanders wanted water security and safety.
But it was out of step proposing bigger was better in sorting perceived sector woes.
She said only 25 per cent of Kaipara residents were on reticulated piped water supplies. The 75 per cent who were not had already sorted how to manage water security.